Bluebell's Dave goes 53lb 10oz

Alex Maltby proved he can serve up an irresistible meal to big carp as well as anglers by catching the king of Bluebell Lakes.

The Birmingham angler, who runs the Benson’s Kitchen catering van at the popular day-ticket complex, caught Dave from Swan Lake at 53lb 10oz.

“I really still can’t quite catch my breath,” Alex told Carpfeed. “It’s such an epic creature that has given me one of the greatest moments of my life.”

 Dave weighed in at 53lb 10oz

Dave weighed in at 53lb 10oz

Alex arrived on Thursday evening but had to wait until Friday morning for his preferred corner swim to become available.

Despite seeing active fish and finding a bloodworm bed close in, Alex was made to sit it out until Saturday morning for any action when he netted a 20lb common on a zig rig.

 Alex savoured the moment with Bluebell regulars

Alex savoured the moment with Bluebell regulars

The next bite was the one that really mattered.

Said Alex: “At around 3pm, out of nowhere my bobbin in an instant went from on the floor completely slack to hitting the rod blank and straight back to the floor.

“I went over to my rods and was standing looking for 10 seconds or so at my bobbin twitching ever so slightly.

“I hit it and was instantly connected to a heavy weight. It was only a very short fight, maybe two or three minutes – it made a couple of runs and then surfaced.

 The fish fell to a single hookbait close in

The fish fell to a single hookbait close in

“I instantly knew exactly what fish it was due to the huge shoulders, and my legs went to jelly! I just walked out clothed into the water and netted it first time before letting out a big yell of, ‘yes, I’ve got Dave!’.”

Alex caught the monster mirror close in over a bloodworm bed on a Nash Key Kray Cultured hookbait on a size 6 JPrecision Curve hook.

 Those unmistakable shoulders meant Alex knew which fish he'd hooked

Those unmistakable shoulders meant Alex knew which fish he'd hooked